Box and Crocodoc in Canvas Replaced by DocViewer!

A lot of major changes coming out of Canvas this weekend. Most notably, Box and Crocodoc, Canvas’s go-to tools for previewing uploaded documents on the page and allowing inline annotations in Speedgrader, have both been replaced by DocViewer.

DocViewer is directly from the Canvas people themselves, so it’s easy-to-use,  has added features, and better fits their aesthetic style.

A comparison:

(images from the Canvas Release Notes)

This is what you’re used to seeing in Speedgrader with the old Crocodoc.


This is what Speedgrader looks like with the new DocViewer.

Crocodoc supported Comment, Draw, Highlight, Text and Strikeout.

DocViewer supports Point, Highlight, Free Text, Strikeout, Free Draw, and Area.

A quick overview of these annotation tools:



Point Area  Point and Area let you select a single spot or an entire area to annotate. A comment box will pop up in the sidebar, like the top arrow in the above image.

Free text Free Text lets you type comments directly on top of the assignment, instead of in the margin.

Highlight Strikethrough Free draw  Highlight, Strikethrough and Free Draw let you highlight, strike out text, or draw over the assignment, but they also let you add comments, too. If you click on the area you annotated, a doc button will pop up, like the bottom arrow in the above image, which will let you add comments.

To Delete annotations, either click the garbage can icon in the comment box, or click on the annotation and press Backspace (Windows) or Delete (Mac).


DocViewer is an exciting change, and transitioning to it should be fun and easy. Canvas should be working hard to roll out improvements to it on the regular, and it looks like we can expect to see a better notification system for students and faculty when they get new comments or replies coming soon!

For more info, check out the Canvas DocViewer Release Notes.



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